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BIRDBATH to be Presented on Demand by KNOW Theatre

A young, unsuccessful poet (Jeff Tagliaferro) meets a young woman (Anna Simek) while they work at an all-night cafeteria in Manhattan.

BIRDBATH to be Presented on Demand by KNOW Theatre

KNOW Theatre will present Binghamton, N.Y., native Leonard Melfi's classic play "Birdbath" for on-demand virtual performances from June 4-13. This production will be fully staged and recorded for online streaming whenever viewers want to watch.

A young, unsuccessful poet (Jeff Tagliaferro) meets a young woman (Anna Simek) while they work at an all-night cafeteria in Manhattan. It's obvious that she doesn't want to return home to the Bronx where she lives with her mother, so he convinces her to come to his place. He gets drunk and entices her to drink a little. He tries to seduce her in the mildest manner possible. She resists in the most devastating way imaginable, turning the evening into a nightmare for both of them. It is a boy-meets-girl love story unlike any other.

Directing the production is KNOW artistic director Tim Gleason, with Scott Fisher as videographer / editor.

Melfi - a star playwright in the 1960s off-off-Broadway scene that also included Sam Shepard, Lanford Wilson and Terrence McNally - wrote more than 70 plays during his lifetime. His work often captured the contradiction of daily urban life, mixing violent imagery with wistful humor and optimism.

"Birdbath," his best-known play, debuted at the La Mama Experimental Theatre Club in Manhattan's East Village in 1965. He also wrote one of the sketches for the erotic revue "Oh, Calcutta!" along with Shepard, John Lennon and others. He co-wrote the screenplay for Mario Monicelli's "Lady Liberty," a 1972 film starring William Devane and Sophia Loren.

Melfi was the eldest child of Binghamton tavern owners Leonard and Louise Melfi. They ran the Brown Derby, then the Circle Tavern and, finally, the Rainbow Grill. After a few years at St. Bonaventure University and two more in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, Melfi packed his bags and moved to Manhattan to become a writer and part-time actor.

"When we started KNOW Theatre in 1993, we considered Leonard Melfi as one of our guiding lights," Gleason said. "We still do, and we are thrilled to keep his spirit alive through this production of 'Birdbath' with Jeff and Anna in the lead roles."

Tickets for on-demand viewing of "Birdbath" are $20 ($15 for students); purchase online at https://www.showtix4u.com/event-details/53812.

KNOW Theatre is an intimate, not-for-profit venue located at 74 Carroll St. in downtown Binghamton, N.Y. For more information, go online to www.knowtheatre.org or email knowtheatrebinghamton@gmail.com.


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